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alone which has won the praise of France. Our art, our London, our sport, our life even, have aroused a sympathetic enthusiasm, and one writer is found bold enough to chant a hymn in praise of an English Sunday!
In truth, if you avert your eyes from politics, you will detect everywhere the influence of England. The decoration, which was forgotten twenty years ago with the timely death of a false æstheticism, is the last fashion of that Paris which was wont to be our dictator. The Pre-Raphaelites, who for a generation have been sunk deep in respectable Philistinism, are hailed at the Champ de Mars as newborn Messiahs; and Sir Edward BurneJones (or Lord Jones as the newspapers prefer to style him) has ousted the Impressionists from their throne. To be in the mode, the Frenchman must buy his furniture in Tottenham Court Road, forget the elegance Louis the Sixteenth, and pay a yearly visit to the City of Fog. Even the sentiment and methodism of the strange town must engross him, and M. Gabriel Mourey, whose "Passé le Detroit" is in a sense the Anglomaniac's Bible, finds it not too late to rhapsodize of Oxford Street and "the little Ann." Thus De Quincey has become, in the translation of M. Barbey d'Aurevilly, a part of French literature, and Mr. George Meredith, if he prove not too craggy for the interpreter, will take his place at Hugo's side. Thomson and Wordsworth, Burns and Shelley have one and all joined the Parnassus of France, and it is impossible to pick up a single magazine wherein some courageous critic does not prove at once the Columbus and the panegyrist of an unknown Briton. One writer, indeed, has been bold enough to discover Mr. Ruskin, and you tremble to think how far this curiosity will carry its victims. Moreover from an intelligent understanding of Mark Twain there has developed a fresh school of French humor, and not even the churl will deny that MM. Alphonse Allais and Georges Auriol have added to the
world's gaiety. Then, again, there is the spectacle of M. Faguet writing of the British drama, as though it were still a serious pursuit, and taking a stern account of those trivialities which intelligence declines to separate. Nor is this all; Mr. John Morley (or Sir John Morlay, if he prefers it), has come forth in the glory of a French dress and of a prefatory trapping contrived by M. Filon. Emerson, also, has his votaries, but the strangest freak of all is the French admiration of Carlyle. "Sartor Resartus" is at this very moment passing through the pages of a review, and one is aghast at the spectacle of Teufelsdröckh thus transformed. Surely it is enough to make the Seer turn in his grave, a public tribute from a nation, for which he neither felt nor professed the smallest sympathy!
This honorable research has carried us far indeed from the acrimony of the of journalists. Yet the appreciation of our literature is at once more sincere and profound than the enmity of edi. tors. At least the finer intellect is ranged upon our side; for in Paris a stern line is drawn between journalism and literature, and while the man of letters constantly condescends to the newspaper, the journalist is never allowed to scale the loftier table-land. Thus there is a constant opposition between literature and the newspapers, an opposition which explains the existence in the same city of admiration and contempt. Nor is it precisely sympathy which induces the writers of France to make trial of English literature. They cannot profess a genuine love of Emerson or a true understanding of the Lake School; the ruggedness of Carlyle must always appear repulsive to the apostles of pure form; and if it had not been for the lawlessness of Belgium, Walt Whitman would never have surprised the heirs of Racine. No, this Anglomania is rather the curiosity of a tired palate. Paris all things have been adventured: no corner of life is secret from the prying eyes of realism; and so for the sake of novelty literature must per
force look abroad, and find in England (or in Timbuctoo) the inspiration denied in too familiar Paris. Meanwhile if the appreciation is but partial, the first steps of the approach have been made, and there is no reason why the curiosity of literature should not compel a courteous understanding of life. The worst is that France penetrates England no further than Tottenham Court Road; yet even this voyage proves an enterprise unknown to Candide. When that traveller visited England with Martin, he witnessed an execution in Portsmouth Harbor. "Who is that fat man," asked Candide, "that has just been killed with so much ceremony?" "That is an admiral," replied Martin. "And why should they kill this admiral?" "Because he did not kill men enough. He gave up a battle to a French admiral, and they thought he was not near enough to his foe." "But," said Candide, "the French admiral was as far from the English admiral as the English from the French." "That is indisputable," replied Martin; "but in this country an admiral is killed from time to time to encourage the others."
And so Candide sailed away, like too many of his countrymen, without setting foot on shore, leaving behind him the parable of our misfortune. France is as far from England as England is from France; nor without knowledge is there any chance of complete reconciliation. How shall we, who esteem not reason, prove intelligible at first sight to a people which is always logical, even though its premisses be false? And who shall convince those travellers who, like Candide, decline to set foot on English soil, that London in June is not impenetrably befogged? The task is beset with difficulties innumerable, and it is our wisest consolation that the hatred is no more sincere than the expressed sympathy. For politics also have their fashion, and Anglophobia may pass away with a perverted taste for Walt Whitman and shapeless furniture.
From The Spectator.
THE "EDINBURGH REVIEW" ON MARS. One American millionaire at least has found a worthy method of employing his surplus wealth. Mr. Percival Lowell, an astronomer with dollars, has, according to the Edinburgh Review, devoted them to an investigation into the conditions of life in other worlds, "including last, but not least, their habitability by beings like and unlike man." He has built a fine observatory near the town of Flagstaff, in Arizona, seven thousand three hundred feet above the sea, whither he has carried, among other instruments, "an eighteen inch equatorial by Brashear," and there for eleven months, from May 24th, 1894, to April 3rd, 1895, he or his assistants have steadily devoted themselves to observations of Mars, achieving as a first result “a marked advance in Martian topography, Mr. Lowell's map of Mars, collected from observations at Flagstaff, being," writes the reviewer, who is obviously an expert, "a remarkable production:" "Turning the globe completely round, as it were, before his audience, he describes, with the help of a seɩ of beautiful drawings, the successive presentations of its chief features, and so impressively as to bring Mars—at least in the cartographical sense within the familiar acquaintance of all who lend him their attention." That seems to us, as we have said, a worthy employment of wealth and leisure, for apart altogether from the object sought, which to many minds, and especially to the minds of a majority of astronomers, will appear somewhat fanciful, it is through investigations pursued under such restrictions that we may hope to obtain a real advance in the manufacture of telescopic apparatus. Men who are searching for a definite something feel the defects of their apparatus as no other observers can, and an American of science with resources practically limitless if he feels defects in his apparatus is nearly certain to make experiments which will either
produce results, or show us conclusively that results are not to be obtained by human ingenuity. It is difficult to believe, when we remember what has been done in other fields of observation, that telescopes have yet been perfected, or to doubt that there are methods, to be discovered by endless perseverance and expenditure, of either increasing farther the range of human eyes, or of superseding them by photographic "eyes" of far superior delicacy and power of vision. The suggestion which the agents of Mr. Yerkes, the Tramway King, are said to be endeavoring to work out, of constructing object-glasses of unprece dented magnitude in pieces, opens a long vista of possibilities, while there is no proof that we are finally confined to glass, a heavy material full of flaws, for the necessary crystals. A lifetime and, say, five millions would not be wasted if their devotion resulted in a great improvement in telescopes such as would confer on all future observers of the heavens powers as new as those which the earlier astronomers derived from the invention of the telescope itself. And one can discern no final reason why such an improvement is impossible, certainly no reason So convincing as those which only two years ago would have induced even sanguine men to declare that the hope of seeing through a wooden box or into the human frame was not only unreasonable but positively silly. Those were not unintelligent persons who only last year received the first telegrams announcing Dr. Röntgen's discovery with a stare of amused surprise at the popular ignorance of the limits of investigation, and who believed, as we know many believed, that Professor Röntgen's name had been taken in vain, and that some clever rascal was availing himself for his own amusement of the disposition towards credulity which recent discoveries in science have undoubtedly generated in educated mankind.
body now would receive a telegram announcing that Mr. Edison had discovered the law for the transmutation
of metals, or a plan for conveying whispers under the Atlantic, with absolute disbelief. Indeed, nobody does disbelieve that a Hungarian professor has discovered, or thinks he has discovered, a way to secure the lastnamed result, and is about to test it at Valentia.
Nor can we perceive, in spite of all the ridicule to which it has been subjected, that the declared object of Mr. Lowell's investigations, and, we may add, of many investigations more privately carried on, is in any way unworthy of the devotion of years and millions. The discovery of the Philosopher's Stone, supposing that phrase to imply a working scheme for transmuting an inferior metal into gold, would probably produce nothing beyond a period of terrible economic confusion, or perhaps a vast and disastrous, because over-rapid, transfer of property; but the attainments of certainty that sentient beings with corporeal encasements, acting by effort and not by pure volition, existed in any one other planet, would only enlarge the range of human thought and the force of the human imagination. Such a certainty would either. increase to an extraordinary degree the reverence for the Creator-for we are all so limited that we reverence powers which we see exerted more than powers which we know in theory must exist-or would compel materialists to revise and widen their whole theory of the relation of matter to mind, it being evident that sentience could exist under conditions hitherto deemed impossible. There are certainly millions, and possibly billions, of worlds of which no two are the same, and if sentient beings were found past question in one other world than ours, the presumption that they existed under a variety of conditions, and probably, therefore, in a variety of forms practically unlimited, would become so violent that to reject the theory would soon be regarded as an evidence of a foolish popular habit of disbelief in the unseen. Man has some internal dislike to believe that limited
beings with sentience can exist under conditions other than his own, and habitually assumes-as, for instance, is assumed in this very review-that a world without air is a dead world, or at all events an empty world; yet there is no proof that the ether, which we know to be everywhere, cannot support life, or that circumstances of which we know nothing may not modify either its intolerable cold or the effect of that cold. In Mars itself there is some potency at work which, to the despair for the moment of terrestrial science, produces warmth where cold ought to reign permanently supreme. It is as certain as any deduction from analogy can be that air in Mars, though it exists, is as rarefied as it would be at the top of a mountain twice as high as Mount Everest, and that consequently the normal and permanent degree of cold ought to be terrible. "The thermal income of Mars is less than half that of the earth, and its theoretical mean temperature is consequently-taking into account its low "albedo," or reflective power per unit of area-thirty degrees Centigrade below freezing." Yet the actual climate of Mars is mild, snow certainly melts rapidly-that is patent to the telescope-vapor certainly rises -that is clear from the spectrumanalysis-water flows, and there are indications, if not proofs, that a sudden vegetation follows the sudden thawing of the snow. What warms the air is unknown, but it is warmed past all question or doubt, and all arguments, therefore, as to the inevitableness of cold in other worlds must be pronounced imperfect, as also are those which show the impossibility of sustaining corporeal life. All we can say with certainty is that if sentient beings with corporeal frames exist in Mars, the relation of the lungs to the body cannot be identical with their relation in man, which, as we are aware of fishes, is not an impossible exercise of the imagination. If conditions fatal to human life on this little globe are compatible in any one other world with corporeal life, no condi
tions can be finally declared to be hopelessly inconsistent with it, the only certainty in the event of such a discovery being that our "necessary" or "inevitable" conditions are not universally either inevitable or necessary. in fact, whatever the direction taken after such a discovery by human thought, it must necessarily be widened-not widened as it might be by a new revelation, but widened-and to attain that end a generation of millionaires or a mountain of gold might worthily and rightfully be expended. What are they worth compared with a great expansion of the human intellect?
It remains to state, though it is hardly needful, that as yet inquiry is in its embryonic stage, and may of course encounter natural barriers which will forever prove impassable. All that we actually know hitherto may be summed up in a very few lines. One planet, Mars, is habitable by corporeal beings but slightly differing from ourselves. There is warmth, there is water, there are seasons in a sequence like those of earth, there is a strong probability, though not yet a certainty, of recurrent vegetation-indicated to the observer by otherwise inexplicable changes of color-and there is some reason to believe in the existence of great public works intended to store and distribute the otherwise insufficient supply of water. The proof of this latter hypothesis, though it convinced Professor Schiaparelli, is as yet wholly insufficient, resting as it does on the assumption that nature never makes perfectly straight lines; but it is sufficient to justify years of patient observation, and the expenditure if needful of millions, in the effort to increase our telescopic powers. The reviewer says: "A new epoch in the investigation of Mars was opened by Signor Schiaparelli's discovery of the 'canals' of Mars during the memorable opposition of 1877. He may be called a miraculous observer. Everything, so far, seen by him with conviction has had only to wait for full ratification.
views of Mars afforded him by an eight and three-quarters inch, later by an eighteen inch refractor were of unprecedented perfection. They had the exquisite clearness of a line-engraving, and left no room for illusion; the features they included were unmistakably there. His canals have thus gradually triumphed over the incredulity, as to their objective presence, of those whose eyes or whose instruments were incapable of showing them, and have taken rank among the least questionable, although perhaps the very strangest of planetary phenomena." We entirely acknowledge that the artificiality of these lines is at best a grand guess, and that the dreamy stuff written two years ago about the possibility of interstellar communication is most of it pure nonsense; but our contention remains solid, that observation of Mars, if carried on for years and with improved instruments, may produce results so enlightening that the chance of attaining them is well worth the devotion of millions of treasure and the lives of many thoughtful men.
From The Speaker.
ON THE VOLGA.
The Englishman of to-day can only feebly imagine what a country owes to its rivers. We love our Thames and Mersey, have even a sneaking affection for the smells of the Clyde and the muddy expanses of the Humber; but England can be pictured without any great river system. No one could picture Russia without the Volga. The Volga made Russia, and is even yet the great artery of national life. The physical conditions to which it owed its importance as one of the great routes of primitive trade, and then as the line of conquest of the Slavic princes, still give it the importance of a real seaboard. Even in this day of rapid railway extension it remains the grand road through vast tracts of unbroken country, the road
by which the fertile South sends her corn in exchange for the no less necessary timber of the North. This predominance cannot last. In the economy of the modern state the watercourse, unless it tap a country rich in minerals, is quickly supplanted by the iron road. The empire of the czars' only seems to be, but is not, an exception to the history of Western social evolution. At last she is awaking, rapidly and unmistakably, from her long Middle Age. A new South is rising over the coal and iron basins of Donetz and Ekaterinburg; a new North living in cities, laboring in factories, impelled by steam and electricity, fills the old-time Muscovite with foreboding of some terrific and incalculable change. Even the Volga has its crop of factories, and its steamers of the American type; its historic citiesTver, Yaroslav, Kostroma, Nijni Novgorod, Kazan-which rose from the wreckage of the Tartar invasion as it became again the line of national expansion and colonization, find themselves threatened to-day by a foe more insidious, a domination whelming. For the most part, however, the drama of industrial revolution will be worked out on another stage; and for long enough the great river will remain to the student of the old Russia, the Russia of the mujik, an unequalled line of observation.
Stand on the bluffs which slope up from the broad, sandy foreshore to any of the large towns from Rybinsk to Nijni Novgorod. What a sense of space one gets in a typical Russian landscape! The heavens seem to dilate under the bright sunshine; breezes, fresh with the breath of Northern ice, carry a flotilla of bellying clouds along an immense horizon. The stillness and silence, a silence too serene to be oppressive, brooding over the whole prospect, enhance this illusion of vastness. Outside the town, save for an occasional flight of wild-fowl, there is no sign of life. Harvest is over; and in many of the villages old men, women, and children are left alone for the long winter days, while the grown